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Dubai’s Expatriate Cost of Living in 2023

Considering a move to Dubai? Whether you’re eyeing business opportunities or exploring promising job prospects, understanding the current cost of living is essential. As Dubai evolves into a thriving hub of trade and innovation, its living costs have also transformed significantly.

In 2023, Dubai’s cost of living has seen a slight increase, but it remains notably lower than other expat-favorite cities like Hong Kong and Singapore. Mercer’s 2023 Annual Cost of Living Survey reflects this, positioning Dubai as a competitive option for those seeking an international move.

Let’s explore a comparison of Dubai’s cost of living against other major cities:

City Single Person Monthly Cost without Rent Average Rent in City Centre (1 Bedroom) Taxi Fare (1km) Petrol (1 Litre)
Dubai AED 3,965.3 (USD 1079.73) AED 7,068.17 (USD 1924.62) AED 3.00 (USD 0.82) AED 3.23 (USD 0.88)
Hong Kong AED 4,053.4 (USD 1103.72) AED 8,311.05 (USD 2263.05) AED 4.46 (USD 1.21) AED 10.47 (USD 2.85)
Singapore AED 4,190.6 (USD 1141.08) AED 13,562.39 (USD 3692.96) AED 2.74 (USD 0.75) AED 8.03 (USD 2.19)
Zurich AED 7,106.3 (USD 1935.00) AED 9,642.99 (USD 2625.73) AED 20.48 (USD 5.58) AED 8.41 (USD 2.29)
New York AED 5,561.0 (USD 1514.23) AED 13,684.68 (USD 3726.26) AED 6.85 (USD 1.87) AED 4.14 (USD 1.13)


Accommodation, education, transportation, and healthcare are key factors that influence the cost of living in Dubai. Housing takes the largest chunk, accounting for around 30% of expenses, followed closely by transportation and food at 15% each.

The cost of living varies with family size:

  • Single person: 30% housing, 15% transportation, 15% food, 10% other.
  • Couple: 25% housing, 15% transportation, 15% food, 10% other.
  • Family of four: 20% housing, 15% transportation, 15% food, 10% other.

In 2023, the cost of living in Dubai has shown a 14% increase for singles and a 15.8% rise for families of four. Factors like inflation, rising rents, and Dubai’s growing popularity contribute to this change.

Dubai, with its appealing attractions and cultural festivities, continues to attract expats. Its diverse communities, seamless public transportation, and healthcare facilities make it a desirable destination. As you plan your move, keep in mind that while Dubai’s costs are rising, it remains a relatively affordable choice among global cities.

Whether you’re weighing accommodation options, schooling expenses, transportation costs, or healthcare requirements, understanding Dubai’s cost of living is pivotal in making informed decisions about your international adventure.



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